Diannah Paramour is 60 years old and a proud Aussie. She refers to herself as a humanitarian in the real sense of the word. Her humanity is not subject to a payroll. She had been following Sri Lanka’s conflict for many years and unlike most had done her own investigations and concluded that much of the hype and propaganda were false. Being regularly involved in social media, she has been able to connect with Sri Lankans of all ethnicity and find out their versions and made her own conclusions. LTTE are terrorists she says. She believes that refugees coming to Australia are neither economic refugees nor runaway terrorists and that LTTE have no business to hoist Eelam flags in Australia or any other country.
On May 18 Diannah made a response in keeping with her consciousness to stand up for what she believes in. She ended up with a broken finger and a bruised rib. Her frightened daughter had to even change her car number plates.
An Australian being bruised and manhandled by Tamil immigrants in Australia is certainly a first for anyone.
Read on and find out what happened.
Q:Tamil Genocide Remembrance Service – where was this event?
In Springvale Town Hall, Springvale, Victoria, Australia on 18th May 2015. The building is owned by Heildeberg City Council.
Q: Why did you want to attend a Tamil Genocide Remembrance Service?
Three weeks ago I discovered that a UN banned terrorist flag was flying somewhere here in Australia. It was the flag of the LTTE. I read a lot, but I am not foolish not to read and understand lies. As a mother I could feel how much the real victims had suffered for 30 years and these victims were not LTTE.
I called Tim Goodman Secretary, Trades Union Hall and he was telling me about genocide, comparing what took place in Sri Lanka to Pol Pot. He said there were concentration camps in Sri Lanka, women were being raped, there were white vans kidnaping people, torture prevailed, sexual abuse of even corpses. Innocent children were being bombed, executions and disappearances taking place and that Mahinda Rajapaksa was a dictator. It was as if he had memorized all these allegations. He went on to say more LTTE flag raising ceremonies were being planned across Australia and invited me to attend a special Tamil conference held in Springvale, Victoria. That is the background of how I came to this event.
Q: What exactly happened at the event?
I am from Tasmania. I flew with my daughter to attend this event. There were about 400-500 people. As my country’s flag was raised I walked towards it with my right hand over my chest and head bowed. Then music started to play. I recalled the tune from a documentary I had seen. It was the LTTE music. I was dumbstruck. The Australian Flag alongside a Terrorist flag? That was unacceptable. I looked at the AUSTRALIAN flag and thought of my treasured great great uncle who gave his life so that my life would be free.
I looked at the LTTE flag and thoughts of every baby, child who died because of this filthy evil flag came to mind. I thought of all the Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims and Burghers whose blood were shed because of this movement. I started taking photos and some people came to me and said ‘no more photos’.
Q: What was spoken at the event?
There were many angry speeches. I could tell by their body language and tone. The dances were lovely so were their costumes. Then a big flame lit on the stage and people started lining up to lay flowers. My daughter whispered in my ear “mum I think this is a funeral service”. Then suddenly a man dressed in ragged clothes came on stage to look as if he had lost an arm. There were sounds of bombs, red ribbons were thrown on stage to signify blood and body parts.
Q: Were there only Tamils present at the event?
Other than the Tamil organizers, Tamil audience the white Australians were Ron Gay Secretary, Australian Unions for Western Samara, myself and my daughter. I couldn’t tell if there were other white Australians. The other Australian was Tim Goodman. Secretary, Trades Union Hall. He came to me and asked ‘why are you here’. My reply was ‘I was invited’. Then he asked if I was the woman from Tasmania and I nodded. He walked away after telling me I was not to take any more photos as I had become a distraction. I believe they had begun to get suspicious!
Q: How did you find yourself near the stage?
I told Ron that I wanted to address the audience and showed him the beautiful peace plaque I had brought to gift to them. He went to the organizers and spoke to the event organizer Aaron and a young Tamil man.
Q: What happened next?
The young Tamil man suddenly said “tonight is not about peace, it’s about war..you can take photos but you cant speak’…I turned to Aaron and said ‘I thought you wanted Australians to know the truth’? The young Tamil man told me ‘this is our country’s service not yours’ and walked away.
Q: Did you get a chance to speak to people present?
Yes I did.
Q: What are your views as an Australian about an internationally banned terrorist movement flying its flag next to the national flag of Australia?
Frankly, I am shocked and annoyed. I have lived 60 long years to serve humanity and truth. Something told me that it was my duty to assist peace in Sri Lanka.
Q: What made you being an Australian with no links to Sri Lanka want to stand for the real victims of Sri Lanka?
I side with the underdog. For me these were the Sinhala Buddhists given unfair treatment by the world. I have for many years now been actively campaigning our government through letters to newspapers and the like attempting to alert them that the Tamils arriving on boats were not genuine asylum seekers – they were economic refugees or terrorists.
Q: Are you linked to any Sri Lankan organization?
Not at all. Other than people I have connected via facebook, I am not linked to anyone.
Q: How did things become violent?
I had taken the Sri Lankan flag with me. It was a gift from my son and very precious to me. As the Australian flag was being lowered, I slowly walked forward with my Sri Lankan flag and said ‘I have a flag too and said it was the ONLY FLAG of Sri Lanka” I went on to say “You come to the safe houses of my country how dare you raise your terrorist flag in Geelong”. The audience and organizers were stunned. No one spoke they all just stared at me. Their silence gave me confidence and I raised my voice more. Then a man in the second row stood up and raised a clenched fist into the air and chanted something in his own language. It was loud too. Then everyone began to get up from their seats and surrounded me. My voice could still be heard…. I was yelling “baby killers, child soldier kidnappers, rapists, terrorists’…. My daughter was taking photos of what was taking place.
Tim Goodman came over and he was a tall man and raised his right hand. I told him ‘don’t you dare hit me’. I could hear everyone yelling at me in Tamil and I yelled back ‘I come in Peace to tell the truth’. Then a Tamil man grabbed my flag shouting ‘don’t you touch my flag with your filthy hands’. Tim Goodman pushed me towards the back of the stage and my back slapped against the barrier.
I did not stop ‘Terrorists, I come in Peace’. I went on. Then another Tamil man grabbed my right hand and yanked it backwards..I felt a bone snap and it went stiff..and I yelled ‘ you have broken my finger’. I struggled because he was too strong. The man on my left finally managed to take my precious flag from me. I was now powerless and feeling physically very weak. There had been another white lady present, she came and said ‘leave her alone she comes in peace’.
Q: Was there anyone to save you?
An extremely brave Sinhalese man ran outside to find the police. I am saying he is brave because had he been caught by those present he would have really suffered! He even waited outside the police station and followed the police car that escorted us back home. I am really touched by this Sinhala Buddhist act of humanity.
Q: Were you frightened?
All my life I thought of myself as a brave heart. I was frankly more annoyed and frightened that inside my own country people we had invited to reside and live under our laws and regulations would pull their weight around a fellow Australian.
There ended the account of an Australian lady who, having figured out the LTTE lies and feeling she had to help the real victims, booked air tickets and travelled to where the LTTE commemoration event was taking place. Her frustration at seeing the Eelam flag being hoisted alongside her nation’s flag resulted in the altercation which left her with a bruised rib and finger.
What action the Australian police take will depend on investigations carried out under Australian laws, but Sri Lankans must all appreciate and send bouquets of gratitude to a lady who went out of her way to defend Sri Lanka all by herself.